Wrong Bit Boat

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Digital Currency advocates have boarded the wrong ship

The Bitcoin crew have targeted “Fiat Money” as the evil that they wish to address – which appears to be like grabbing the tail of the dog.

Professor Lance Brofman (Economics and Finance, Chair of Business Department Globe Institute of Technology – Colorado Technical University) sees “Fiat Money” as a very minor component of the overall Money Supply in our Economy – and as that is the case advocates of Bitcoin and other digital currencies appear to be arguing among themselves

Article Excerpt: http://seekingalpha.com/article/1514632
“Money is what can be used to buy things. Historically money has first been specie (gold and silver coins), then fiat money which is paper currency and checking accounts (M1) and more recently credit money. The credit money supply is what in aggregate can be bought on credit. Two hundred years ago your ability to take your friends out to dinner depended on whether or not you had enough coins (specie) in your pocket. One hundred years ago it depended on the quantity of currency in your pocket and possibly the balance in your checking account if the restaurant would take checks.

Today it is mostly your credit card that allows you to spend. We no longer have a fiat money system. Today we have a credit money system. Just because there is still some fiat money does not negate the fact that we are on a credit money system. When we were on a basically fiat money system there was still a small amount of specie in circulation. Even today a five cent piece contains about 5 cents worth of metal, but no one would claim we are still on a specie money system.

Fiat money is easy to measure; M1 was $1.376 trillion in 2007 and was $2.535 trillion in May 2013. The effective money supply is the sum of fiat money and credit money. Credit money cannot be precisely measured. However, when the person in California whose occupation was strawberry picker and who had made $14,000 in his best year was able to get a mortgage of $740,000 with no money down and private equity could buy a company like Clear Channel in a $20 billion leveraged buyout, also with essentially no money down, the credit money supply was clearly much higher than today. A reasonable ballpark estimate of the credit money supply is that it was $70 trillion in 2007 compared to $50 trillion today.

The effective money supply is the sum of the traditional fiat money aggregates plus the credit money supply.”

Bitcoin does not address the economic issues in today’s financial world – and at present appears to be very much like a storm in a tea cup.